Market research is an important marketing tool. It allows us to better understand our target audience and create the right campaigns.
Launching a new product, brand, or strategy, identifying issues with our strategy, and getting ideas to improve our service… Market research offers many useful applications. Let’s find out what it is and use it with our brand.
What is market research?
Market research is the systematic collection of data by companies about their customers to help them better understand their target audience and make better decisions. This allows companies to manage their time and resources more effectively.
Two main types of market research techniques can be distinguished: qualitative and quantitative.
Examples of quantitative techniques
- Surveys: This technique involves asking customers a series of questions. This allows us to quickly collect a lot of information that can be easily quantifiable, especially when we use online surveys.
- Interviews: The interview consists of a series of questions and open answers. This allows you to dig into a particular topic such as product design or price. Interviews are usually conducted orally by telephone, via videoconference, or in person.
- Mystery shopper: This type of market research involves a person posing as a customer to evaluate the buying process. The mystery shopper must fill out a survey following their visit in order to make the data quantifiable.
Analyzing social networks and social listening allows us to get objective information at a very low price about the lifestyle, opinions, and consumption habits of our potential audience.
Also read: Top 10 Keyword Research Tools
Examples of qualitative techniques
- Interview in-depth: Although we’ve seen the interview as a case of a quantitative technique in the preceding section, we can now move to the qualitative field by conducting more detailed interviews without having prepared questions. This allows for a more natural conversation between the interviewer and the consumer.
- Focus groups: This is one of the most sought-after research methods. Although it can be expensive, it provides valuable information. This involves gathering a group of 6-12 people from the target market to interview them. Then, they will engage in a discussion on a topic that is of interest to the brand.
How to do market research in 7 steps
1. Define your goals
Before we take on any marketing activity, it is important to stop and reflect on what we are trying to accomplish with it.
Clear goals will allow you to focus on your next steps and produce satisfactory results.
Market research is an extremely versatile tool that can be used to help achieve many different goals: testing a product idea, analyzing the success or failure of an advertising campaign, or improving an existing service.
2. Identify your target audience
Market research is about understanding your target audience. It is important to have a clear definition in order for you to get good results.
If this is something you haven’t done before, it is time to define your buyer persona. This represents the ideal client for your products and services. The buyer persona should include more than just demographic data. It should also include detailed information about their needs, habits, and challenges.
3. Choose the sample and the method
We have seen examples of both quantitative and qualitative methods in the section before. The market research objectives and resources available to us will determine which method we choose.
It is important to choose a representative sample from our target audience. This can be done either randomly (random sampling) or non-probabilistic (selecting different profiles so they are representative of the entire population).
4. Collecting data
We must design the instrument in order to collect data about our target audience. This includes the structure, characteristics, and survey questions.
The next step is to apply the instrument to our sample until you have the data you are after. This process can take anywhere from a few days up to several months depending on the technique used.
5. Learn about your competitors
It is a smart idea to collect data from our target audience and to add information about the competition to our market research.
There are many online tools that can assist us with this task.
- Google Keyword Planner: To see the search volume for competitive keywords and to analyze which terms generate the most traffic,
- SimilarTech: To find out which technologies are used on similar websites.
- SimilarWeb: To find out about the traffic and audience of competitor websites,
- Buzzsumo: To analyze the performance and publication of competitions in social networks.
Also read: 5 Ways To Spy on Your Competitors With Social Media
6. Complement the information with other sources
You can get a better picture of the market by studying the target audience and competition. I also recommend that you add data about the market to your market research. You can use sources like the National Commission for Markets and Competition, or the Think With Google studies and analysis on the digital market.
7. Analyze the data
Last, but not least: You will need to analyze the data you’ve gathered in your market research.
To make your final report useful and informative, you should put the data into context, summarize the most important information using graphs that are easily understood at a glance, and include practical recommendations for how to apply what you have learned.